Hide-and-Seek Profiles

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As my friend Master Sourcer Marcel van der Meer demonstrates, 84 MLN LinkedIn members will not be found by locations.

We also know from test searches that:

  • ~45-60% members are not found by Seniority, Function, Company Size, and other LinkedIn-calculated filters
  • ~600 MLN members cannot be found by years of experience.

People join LinkedIn to be visible and be found. What percent of members succeed with that? Marcel’s post has prompted me to run a test search on LinkedIn Recruiter, selecting all these values:

  • Locations (all continents except Antarctica; adding the latter results in seeing just 25 Software Engineers, which is a bug, right?)
  • Seniority (all values)
  • Function (all values)
  • Company Sizes (all values)
  • Company Types (all values)
  • Years of experience from 0 to 100

(I could have also selected levels of connections and industries, reducing the results further, but that crashes Recruiter.)



  • 18% (or fewer) members are found by the search filters
    • 42% of them are women
    • 24% of them are open to work
  • 82% members (or more) are hidden when you use these search filters.

Unknowingly, 82% members play hide-and-seek and miss opportunities. How does that happen? There are two main reasons for profiles to disappear from search:

  1. Data is absent on the profile. Some people have missing locations, years of work, etc.
  2. LinkedIn does not understand the data (such as job titles). It happens with Seniority, Function, and other filters. — Using standard language will put you back on the map.

I doubt Marcel and I can reach the invisible 820 MLN members prompting them to get on the radar by entering info that LinkedIn algorithms recognize. (Reaching LinkedIn asking to fix search deficiencies is just as hard.)

But if you are reading this, please share with your peers, and check out how to be found. Also, do not search for work on LinkedIn – use Google instead.


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